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Blenheim Tri Race Report

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Joined: 06 Dec 2016
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PostPosted: Fri Jun 15, 2018 12:21 pm    Post subject: Blenheim Tri Race Report Reply with quote

So my first race of the season was the Blenheim Palace Sprint Triathlon 740m 20k 5.4k.

I wasn't taking it too seriously in the build up, was supposed to be a gear test and a fun day out, then the horn went... The swim is a long straight then a 90 degree turn a straight to the boathouse pontoon. I managed to position well at the beginning and had some feet to follow (it all helps with my atrocious sighting). Quick sight check and went straight out of the water in 14.23, massive improvement for me on my previous 18min at that distance.

Then it's a full on 400m slog up a steep hill from the lake to the palace, with a wetsuit restricting your lower body, however there was amazing support with lots of friends and family there shouting. A little right hand turn and into the Palace courtyard, well laid out and well signposted, for once I didn't get lost, quickly out of my wetsuit and into bike gear before heading out onto a traffic free 3 lap course.

Straight out of transition, I slipped off the pedals so looked down to figure out what was wrong, heard some shouting from spectators and so I looked up and just managed to avoid hitting the barriers. Caught the handlebars slightly, straightened the bike up and carried on. Quickly realised the handlebars weren't perfectly straight but good enough to continue on. Three laps of beautiful grounds, the course wasn't too busy but much hillier than expected. A girl on a pink bike with full carbon disc came wooshing past me and I had to get my 'manliness' into check as she was clearly a much better cyclist than me and I was never going to chase her down. A couple of guys in aero bars came past quickly, one quickly went off into the distance but the second just held there as a nice target. We played cat and mouse for two laps until I finally dropped him on one of the false flats whilst pushing a big gear and then the bike was over in a shade of 38 minutes.

Parked the bike up in transition and started off out, I quickly realised that the massive ramp over the bike course I had seen earlier was where I had to run. Whoever thought that was a good idea is a complete sadist. Then it was out onto the run proper, two laps of the lake with huge downhill to start. By this time, I was feeling the heat at about 27 in the shade. Legs were feeling heavy, so decided to ease into it down the hill. Round the corner to see a waterstation, quickly chucked some over my head before starting the climb back to the palace. Lap 1 completed in just over 12 minutes before what had started as a little stitch developed into something unbearable. Ran past friends cheering me on (can't stop in view of my supporters), pushed on until rounding the corner to start lap two had a quick walking break to stretch out the stitch. It seemed to help and so I pushed on, letting the hill help with the speed. Checked watch to see HR floating at 185, euch, no wonder it was feeling so hard! The second drag up the hill was tough, there were a much higher number of walkers than normal in a sprint distance race showing how tough people were finding it. Ran past a friend Nick who was just finishing his first lap, couple of friendly words before I powered on...and then stopped to stretch out the stitch again. He came past me, told me off for walking and I took it to heart.

Put in a massive effort to finish the race strongly, went past the turning to start a new lap (huzzah) and into the finish straight Tried to sprint to the line but I was pretty much maxed out by this point and it was probably more of an elongated hobble. Quick celebration over the line, cheeky cold alcohol free pint and some water over the head before having a long lie down near my amazing family. They had stood next to the circuit fornearly 90 mins cheering me on and they do help you when it gets tough. A total time of 1h26m10s and very happy with that performance. It always looks like you could have done more in retrospect but I think I gave it what I had.

Now onto Windsor Olympic on Sunday where I hope it's a little cooler.
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Joined: 02 Sep 2005
Posts: 1639

PostPosted: Fri Jun 15, 2018 2:03 pm    Post subject: Re: Blenheim Tri Race Report Reply with quote

Jgav wrote:

Now onto Windsor Olympic on Sunday where I hope it's a little cooler.

Good write up. Good luck Sunday...I'm in the 6:40 wave
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